STAFF NEWS & ANALYSIS
EU Banks Limiting Bullion Buying?
By Staff News & Analysis - September 15, 2011

Banks, Governments Move To Restrict Personal Gold Bullion Purchases … The most alarming situation we identified is one relating to the purchase of gold coins and bullion – specifically in the country of Austria – but one that will likely make its way across the EU if it hasn't already. Unlike the United States, where gold and silver can be purchased through traditional methods like visiting a local dealer directly, or even placing an order on the internet, it is much more difficult to find a gold/silver dealer outside of Germany or Switzerland. As a result, those individuals interested in acquiring gold are left with purchasing directly from local bank branches. Had you visited an Austrian bank three months ago, you would have had absolutely no problem purchasing a large quantity of gold/silver from the bank. You'd simply call the bank about 24 – 48 hours in advance, let them know you're coming and how much you needed, and you'd personally pick up your order within a couple days. A new trend in Austrian (and perhaps the rest of Europe's) banking policies suggests that certain interested parties are attempting to control the sale and personal acquisition of gold/silver as safe haven assets. What we experienced first hand should be a wake up call for not just Europeans, but Americans as well. – SHTFplan/Mac Slavo

Dominant Social Theme: Why do you need to buy gold? Paper is more convenient. And really you should be using credit cards for most of your purchases.

Free-Market Analysis: While we cannot vouch for this article by Mac Slavo at SHTFplan.com, if true, it certainly represents a ratcheting up of government resistance to the rising valuation of gold versus paper money.

The fears of the free-market community, worldwide, that gold and silver would reach a critical valuation mass that would stimulate rationing and confiscation have long been discussed at alternative websites – even DB. Slavo believes these fears are in the process of being realized, and he identifies certain EU trends that support his concerns.

Even if not true, or not representing a trend currently, the ideas that Slavo presents are legitimate within the context of how Western elites are acting regarding their paper-money franchise. The recent news that Switzerland had linked its franc to the stumbling euro is evidence enough that the Anglosphere power elite will do virtually anything to salvage its fading fiat money franchise.

This is not surprising, of course, as we have long pointed out with others that the fundamental motor for the repression, wars, imprisonments, murders and general, enlarging depression is the elite's control of central banking and currency printing. This is the facility that drives everything else.

Money Power in fact will NOT utilize its own funds to realize its goals of global domination. This makes sense, of course, as only a virtually unlimited supply of "money" can drive the globe toward worldwide governance. And only control of central banks that can print virtually unlimited amounts of money makes possible the incomprehensible insanity of this ambition.

What is certainly true within the context of Slavo's report is that governments – specifically the American government – have confiscated gold before in modern times when the sociopolitical and economic situation was similar. In 1933, Franklin Delano Roosevelt confiscated gold pursuant to a "national emergency" mandating that citizens surrender their gold to the government as follows:

An Act to provide relief in the existing national emergency in banking, and for other purposes, in which amendatory Act Congress declared that a serious emergency exists, I, Franklin D. Roosevelt, President of the United States of America, do declare that said national emergency still continues to exist and pursuant to said section do hereby prohibit the hoarding of gold coin, gold bullion, and gold certificates within the continental United States by individuals, partnerships, associations and corporations and hereby prescribe the following regulations for carrying out the purposes of the order …

Slavo's report, which was apparently written specifically for the alternative website SHTFplan, makes mention of a trip to the Eurozone "where we met with a host of different people across many countries and several industries."

He came away concerned. "All of the indicators we're seeing – construction starts, bank lending, personal borrowing habits, economic growth, and even the (lack of) items in grocery store carts – suggest that Europe is on the brink, though as is generally the case, the average European has no clue what's coming their way."

But his biggest concern had to do with precious metals, specifically gold and new policies implemented about its purchases. The policy change was quiet, he writes, and "has not been reported by any media outlets that we're aware of, and no mention of the new policies is made on the web sites of Austria's largest banking institutions (though it is clear they vehemently comply with US anti-money laundering measures and the Patriot Act)." Here's some more:

According to the bank representatives and manager we spoke with, Austrian banks have now been ordered to restrict the sale of gold and silver bullion purchases and are limiting personal acquisitions of precious metals to 15,000€ (approximately $20,700 USD) at a time, or 11 ounces of gold at today's prices. Upon further discussion we learned that these policies were implemented over the course of the last 30 days, and they are now standard operating procedure. The reason given was the banks had come under pressure from EU, Austrian and U.S. officials, with this particular manager specifically citing U.S. money laundering.

The idea that these restrictions have been put in place as anti-money laundering measures is laughable. As we all know, if a drug cartel or other criminal organization wanted to launder money, they wouldn't do it in person purchasing bullion coins at a local banking branch. They'd simply pick up the phone and contact a too-big-too-fail bank (video), as we've seen with the billions of dollars recently laundered through U.S. banks. You may remember there was very little reporting on this issue from mainstream media and it has been ignored by U.S. prosecutors. As Austria is one of the more developed nations in the Euro Zone, there is a strong likelihood that they are not the sole country implementing these new policies – and that this has been, or soon will be, implemented across the entirety of EU nations.

To the average European and American this may not mean much. But if you've been paying attention to the events unfolding over the last several years, it's becoming clear that the economies of the EU and US are under threat of a significant and potentially permanent financial collapse … IMF managing director Christine Lagarde was [recently] quoted as saying that the situation is so dire, "policymakers should stand ready, as needed, to take more action to support the recovery, including through unconventional measures." The new gold and silver purchasing limits would certainly qualify as unconventional, along with other recent proposed measures by EU officials and business leaders.

Slavo points out that various currency restrictions in Europe are becoming much more openly discussed and that one such proposal from Italian business leaders calls for all cash transactions over 300 Euro (about $400 USD) to be banned, and to be permitted only in electronic format.

The trend toward restricting the use of cash (and precious metals) is certainly a real one. We've pointed out in several articles how over-banked the world is generally as people do not understand that banking is the final "big bubble."

Central banks and the BIS simply will NOT let their large money center banks go out of business. Go to any large city, even in the Third World, and chances are you will be astonished at how many of the largest skyscrapers are owned by banks or serve as the headquarters for massive banking entities.

We have written as well about seeing an elderly women in Panama fingerprinted at a supermarket as part of a transaction in which she paid for her goods with a US$100 bill. In many countries it is now impossible to open a bank account without applying for residency or carrying a national ID card of sorts.

The BIS, which controls at least 100 central banks around the world (and is the bastion of elite Money Power) is silently coordinating the increasing currency repression. One can read the same warnings (posted in banks) about Ponzi schemes and drug trafficking in Kenya as in Kansas.

Money policies are administered out of Switzerland but organize the world. The global trend across industrialized nations for the last 20 years has been to move towards a cashless society, as Slavo points out, but one that still utilizes centrally planned currencies.

And it is also likely true that while central banks, large institutional funds and wealthy private investors across the world continue to buy up gold, "governments seem to be moving quickly to restrict the ability of average people to do the same – and they are rapidly implementing policies to either restrict or track these types of transactions."

Many cities around the country, such as Houston, TX, have passed identification requirements that force sellers of precious metals to present a valid form of ID at the time of sale. Like Europe, the U.S. is expeditiously implementing direct methods of tracking these transactions, as well as indirect methods that target those who may be engaging in suspicious activities, namely using cash, as per FBI and Homeland Security bulletins issued last month.

We have long believed Anglosphere elites will not again attempt to confiscate gold from individual investors, because it is a kind of self-defeating solution; yet perhaps our confidence is misplaced. Roosevelt did so, so far as we can tell, because he didn't want people to turn in FRNs and discover there was not enough gold to meet demand, as the Fed had been illegally overprinting money throughout the 1920s.

Times have changed; central bankers have different concerns now and fears of different kinds of exposure. But what we can see happening is that the powers-that-be continue to make gold (and silver) purchases more difficult and invasive, while making electronic (cashless) purchases easier and more efficient.

It is all about control. What IS important is that people's purchasing habits, when it comes to PMs, are tracked and documented. That way, if further measures are introduced, the information will be available to law enforcement, etc.

In the end, of course, if the fiat system – or at least the dollar reserve system – DOES collapse, all this information-collecting will likely prove virtually useless. It also occurs to us that sooner or later the world, or parts of it, is probably returning to some sort of gold standard as the Internet Reformation unfolds and the logic of asset-backed money becomes irrepressible.

After Thoughts

Would gold confiscation be part of the implementation of a new money standard? We're not prepared to say, but increasingly these are interesting times.

Posted in STAFF NEWS & ANALYSIS
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